Hey folks. Looking to spruce up your lawn for the summer? Always wanted that nice green lawn? Best thing to do is attack it early! After years of experience, I think I have a decent forumla.
Start by dethatching your lawn. This pulls out all of the dead grass that would otherwise restrict the growth of the healthy ones. It also exposes the soil for better seed penetration. This can done either by a manual rake like this one:
Sort of looks like something from the grim reaper. This rake is effective but HARD work. If you're up for the good arm, back, and cardio workout, this is the cheapest method (around $17-$25). If you're tight on time or just plain lazy, you can invest in a electric dethatcher. Should cost around $180.
This will cut your time in to no time at all! Effective for average sized lawns. However you will need to drag a powercord around all over the place. YUCK! Your next option is to get a gas powered one. These are definitely pricier. expect to pay $800+. Luckily you can rent one at your local homedepot for around $70 for 4 hours.
Now that your lawn is all dethatched, what to do with the loose dead grass? Bag them up with yard bags!
Depending on your city and neighbourhood, yard waste is collected every two weeks. Know when they come so your bags aren't sitting outside in the rain! If you have too many bags, you can bring them to a yard waste disposal near Bloomington st and Leslie st: 1351 Bloomington Rd E, Richmond Hill, ON L4E 3E6
Now it's time to overseed your lawn. Unless you've been feeding chickens most of your life, it is a good idea to invest in a speader for this purpose.
Follow the grass seed bag for instructions on what value to set on your spreader for over seeding. Now that is done, fertilize the lawn with fertilizer!
I like this scotts brand of fertilizer; it has worked well for me for years. They go on sale often so make sure you pick up a couple of bags. You will be fertilizing about every 2 months for optimal grass.
When the fertilizer is down, you should sprinkle some top soil over your entire lawn. This is called top dressing the lawn. The grass seeds need soil contact to germinate. This ensures that seeds that do not have contact will have contact. Walmart sells topsoil for $1 a bag. you will need at least 20-30 bags for an average sized lawn. You can always go to garden centers and buy in bulk if it's easier. The cost may or may not be cheaper.
Final step is to water the lawn daily for 2 weeks. The initial watering should be heaviest to ensure the seeds get washed down into the soil. The seeds need to be kept continually moist to grow. Do not mow your lawn until the new grass have established their roots.
Enjoy your lawn!